Human Rights Council: Special Procedures

The Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council are independent human rights experts with mandates to report and advise on human rights from a thematic or country-specific perspective. They can take the form of Special Rapporteurs, Independent Experts and Working Groups. With the support of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the Special Procedures prepare thematic reports that contribute to addressing specific human rights concerns and clarifying human rights standards and make recommendations to States fulfill their international binding legal obligations to respect, protect and fulfill human rights. The Special Procedures also undertake country visits, send communications to States in which they bring alleged violations or abuses to their attention, engage in advocacy, raise public awareness, and provide technical support and cooperation on areas related to their mandate.

The Special Procedures that specifically address the situation of women and girls are the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, established in 1994, and the UN Working Group on discrimination against women and girls, established in 2010.

In the following years, the Working Group on discrimination against women and girls will focus on the areas outlined below in its annual thematic reports:

-Protecting and realizing women’s rights in the changing world of work.

-Ensuring the prioritization of sexual and reproductive health and rights in situations of crisis and insecurity.

-Realizing the rights of girl children and adolescent girls.

– Emerging issues and strategies for the realization of women’s rights.

FAR, committed in strengthening the use of human rights instruments and women’s human rights mechanisms to enhance women’s advocacy, will be organizing in 2020 a series of workshops and consultations in Asia, Latin America and MENA to produce submissions for the Working Group on discrimination against women and girls’ forthcoming thematic report on sexual and reproductive health and rights in times of crisis and insecurity. The first consultation of this series took place on November 8th, 2019 in Nairobi, Kenya.